The 2021 CQ World-Wide VHF Contest

Begins: 1800 UTC Saturday, July 17, 2021

Ends: 2100 UTC Sunday, July 18, 2021

Important Note: Paper logs are no longer accepted, see Section XII.

I. Contest Period

27 hours for all stations, all categories. Operate any portion of the contest period you wish. (Note: Exception for QRP Hilltopper.)

II. Objectives

The objectives of this contest are for amateurs around the world to contact as many amateurs as possible in the contest period, to promote VHF, to allow VHF operators the opportunity to experience the enhanced propagation available at this time of year, and for interested amateurs to collect VHF Maidenhead grid locators for award credits.

III. Bands

All amateur radio frequencies on 50 MHz (6 meters) and 144 MHz (2 meters) may be used as authorized by local law and license class. Note exceptions in Rule XI for common repeater frequencies and 146.52 MHz.

IV. QSO Alerting Assistance

The use of any technology or other source that provides callsign or multiplier identification along with frequency information about a signal to the operator. This includes, but is not limited to, use of DX Cluster, packet, local or remote callsign and frequency decoding technology (e.g., CW Skimmer or Reverse Beacon Network), or operating arrangements involving other individuals.

  1. All stations are allowed to use QSO Alerting Assistance. No self-spotting or asking to be spotted is allowed.
  2. Stations attempting digital EME or digital meteor-scatter QSOs are allowed to spot the callsign, frequency, and sequence only. Caution: To ensure strict compliance with these rules, the adjudication process will include review of realtime and archived transcripts from websites used to coordinate alerting data during the contest period.
  3. The use of non-amateur means to effect a QSO is not allowed. This includes use of the telephone, and website posts providing information beyond that of callsign, frequency, and sequence.
  4. Rovers may use APRS to announce their location.

V. Categories of Competition

For all categories (except Rover): Transmitters and receivers must be located within a 500-meter diameter circle or within the property limits of the station licensee’s address, whichever is greater.

  1. Single Operator – All Band. Only one signal allowed at any one time; the operator may change bands at any time.
  2. Single Operator – Single Band. Only one signal allowed at any one time.
  3. Single-Operator – All-Band QRP. There are no location restrictions – home or portable – for stations running 10 watts output or less.
  4. Hilltopper. This is a single-op QRP portable category for an all-band entry limited in time to a maximum of 6 continuous hours. Backpackers and portables who do not want to devote resources and time to the full contest period are encouraged to participate, especially to activate rare grids. Any power source is acceptable.
  5. Rover. A Rover station is one manned by no more than two operators, travels to more than one grid location, and signs “Rover” or “/R” with no more than one callsign.
  6. Multi-Op. A multi-op station is one with two or more operators and may operate 6 and 2 meters simultaneously with only one signal per band.

Stations in any category, except Rover and QRP Hilltopper, may operate from any single location, home or portable.

VI. Exchange

Callsign and Maidenhead grid locator (4 characters, e.g., EM15). Signal reports are not required and should not be included in the log entry.

VII. Multipliers

The multiplier is the number of different grid locators worked per band. A grid locator is counted once per band. Exception: The rover who moves into a new grid locator may count the same grid locator more than once per band as long as the rover is himself or herself in a new grid locator location. Such change in location must be clearly indicated in the rover’s log.

  1. A rover station becomes a new QSO to the stations working him or her when that rover changes grid locator.
  2. The grid locator is the four-character Maidenhead grid (e.g. EM15).

VIII. Scoring

One (1) point per QSO on 50 MHz and two (2) points per QSO on 144 MHz. Allowed modes are “PH” (SSB, AM, FM), “CW” and “DG” (‘digital’ modes such as FT8, FT4 and MSK144). Entrants are requested to stop using “RY” or “PH” for QSOs made using “digital” modes. Work stations once per band, regardless of mode. Multiply total QSO points times total number of grid locators (GL) worked.

Rovers: For each new grid locator visited, contacts and grid locators count as new. Final Rover score is the sum of contact points made from each grid locator times the sum of all grid locators worked from all grids visited.

Example 1. K1GX works stations as follows:

50 QSOs (50 x 1 = 50) and 25 GLs (25 multipliers) on 50 MHz
35 QSOs (35 x 2 = 70) and 8 GLs (8 multipliers) on 144 MHz

K1GX has 120 QSO points (50 + 70 = 120) x 33 multipliers
(25 + 8 = 33) = 3,960 total points.

Example 2. W9FS/R works stations as follows:

From EN52: 50 QSOs (50 x 1 = 50) and 25 GLs (25 multipliers) on 50 MHz
From EN52: 40 QSOs (40 x 2 = 80) and 10 GLs (10 multipliers) on 144 MHz
From EN51: 60 QSOs (60 x 1 = 60) and 30 GLs (30 multipliers) on 50 MHz
From EN51: 20 QSOs (20 x 2 = 40) and 5 GLs (5 multipliers) on 144 MHz

W9FS/R has 230 QSO points (50 + 80 + 60 + 40) x 70 multipliers
(25 + 10 + 30 + 5) = 16,100 total points

IX. Awards

Electronic certificates will be made available for download for everyone that submits an entry.

Plaques will be awarded to the highest scoring stations where sponsored. They are offered in various categories on a sponsored basis. Clubs and individual plaque donors are sought and may find information on how to sponsor a CQWW VHF Contest plaque at < https://www.cqww-vhf.com/plaques.htm >.

X. Club Competition

The club score is the total aggregate score from logs submitted by members. There are two separate club competition categories.

  1. USA Clubs: Participation is limited to club members residing within a 250 mile radius circle from the center of club area.
  2. DX Clubs: Participation is limited to club members residing within EITHER the DXCC country where the club is located OR within a 400 km radius circle from the center of club.

General club rules:

  1. National organizations (e.g., JARL, REF or DARC) are not eligible for the club competition.
  2. Spell out the full name of the club. See examples of active club names at https://cqww-vhf.com/clubnames.htm.
  3. Single-operator entries may only contribute to one club. Multi-operator scores may be allocated to multiple clubs as a percentage of the number of club members participating in the operation. The log entry must spell out the full club name (and club allocations if multi-op).
  4. A minimum of three logs must be received for a club to be listed in the results. Checklog entries are not counted for the club score.

XI. Miscellaneous

An operator may sign only one callsign during the contest. This means that an operator cannot generate QSOs by first signing his callsign, then signing his daughter’s callsign, even though both callsigns are assigned to the same location.

A station located exactly on a dividing line of a grid locator must choose only one grid locator from which to operate for exchange purposes.

A different multiplier cannot be given out without moving the complete station at least 100 meters.

Making or soliciting QSOs on the national simplex frequency, 146.52 MHz, or your country’s designated national simplex frequency, or immediately adjacent guard frequencies, is prohibited. Use of commonly recognized repeater frequencies is prohibited. Recognized FM simplex frequencies such as 146.49, .55, and .58, and local-option simplex channels may be used for contest purposes.

Aeronautical mobile contacts do not count.

Contestants should respect use of the DX window, 50.100-50.125 MHz, for intercontinental QSOs only.

UTC is the required logging time.

XII. Log Submissions

Log entries must be submitted by July 28, 2021 to be eligible for awards.

An extension may be requested by e-mail to < director@cqww-vhf.com >. The request must state a legitimate reason and must be received before the log deadline. Extensions are granted only upon confirmation by the Contest Director.

Logs submitted after the deadline may be listed in the results, but are not eligible for awards.

The CABRILLO file format is the standard for logs. See <https://cqww-vhf.com/cabrillo.htm> for detailed instructions on filling out the CABRILLO file header. Note: U.S. stations must indicate the station location in the CABRILLO header (e.g., LOCATION: OH).

Web upload of Cabrillo log files is the only method of log submission. Web upload is available at <https://cqww-vhf.com/logcheck/>.

An ADIF Converter is provided for convenience and, at present, is suitable only for FIXED station logs (sorry Rovers). It is available at <https://cqww-vhf.com/adif/>.

Entry Confirmation: All logs received will be confirmed via email. A listing of logs received can be viewed at < https://cqww-vhf.com/logs_received.htm>.

XIII. Declaration

Your submission of a log entry affirms that: (1) you have abided by all the rules of the contest as well as those of your country’s licensing authority; (2) you accept any decisions made regarding your entry by the contest’s adjudication process which are official and final.

Questions pertaining to the CQ WW VHF Contest rules may be sent to < questions@cqww-vhf.com >.

Go to Rules Archive

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